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Governor of South Australia Commendation - Excellence Award Previous recipients - Class of 2021
Sebastian tutored his peers and younger students in mathematics and science. He also worked with engineering students from Adelaide University to study and prepare for exams. In addition to this Commendation, Sebastian also received a SACE subject merit in English.
Muhammad returned to studies as an adult. English is his fourth language, and he balanced his Year 12 studies while also supporting his family, who are new to Australia and have limited English. As a refugee himself, he is sensitive to the needs and difficulties faced by other refugees and believes that by sharing such stories compassion be increased.
Caitlin is passionate about helping the most vulnerable within the community. She is committed to promoting awareness of social issues such as human trafficking and domestic violence. In addition to this Commendation, Caitlin received a SACE subject merit in Religion Studies.
A keen cricketer, Manish participates in a multicultural T20 cricket competition where he has forged relationships with recently arrived migrants. Manish also worked with reception students, and advocates for children who have experienced trauma. In addition to this Commendation, Manish received a SACE subject merit in Integrated Learning A.
As a member of the Conservation Corp, Anna volunteers her time acting on environmental matters, from cleaning beaches, to planting trees and waste management while at school. Her Research Project explored how implementing cultural burning into contemporary practices could ensure sustainable bushfire risk mitigation in South Australia. Anna has also been awarded four SACE subject merits in English Literary Studies, Legal Studies, General Mathematics and Modern History.
Lily Di Cola
In addition to her SACE studies Lily played high level women’s soccer in the South Australian Women’s National Premier League and participated in the National Training Centre program.
Lily Grace Farrell
Lily was awarded the title of Young Historian of the Year in 2019 and 2020 and was only the second South Australian student to win three major history competitions. She also received an Australian Defence Force Future Innovators Award, which recognises students who show high achievement in mathematics and science.
Thomas won an Australian Defence Force Future Innovators Award in 2021. He has designed and built a digital application called ‘SACEOLOGY’ to help students and teachers to understand and teach the SACE. His Research Project investigated possible life forms on terrestrial planets of the stellar system. His findings were published by the Australian Centre for Astrobiology, and he has presented at Astronomical Society of SA meetings.
Grace is a talented athlete who represented her school in netball, soccer, volleyball, basketball and softball. In 2021, Grace was awarded the Makin Humanitarian Award, which recognises a senior student who has demonstrated outstanding humanitarian qualities.
Katelin’s Research Project explored ‘the psychological adjustment strategies needed when adapting to a spinal cord injury’ demonstrating the determination she showed upon her return to school following a serious accident that left her wheelchair bound. Katelin mentors a young amputee who she met while in hospital. She has been selected for the 2023 Australian Devils under 25 Women’s wheelchair basketball team.
Chloe was also the recipient of the 2021 Aboriginal Student SACE Excellence Award. Chloe has won scholarships and awards in both the academic and sports fields. Throughout the SACE, Chloe was a peer leader in an elite Aboriginal Netball Academy run by SAASTA (South Australian Aboriginal Secondary Training Academy). During this time, she also learned a lot about her own culture which sparked her own journey of personal identity. Chloe’s significant academic achievements have led her to tertiary studies in Criminology and Law & Society at Flinders University.
Emma’s poetry won a South Australian English Teachers Association Young Writers Award. Emma is committed to protecting the rights of disadvantaged and minority groups. She participated in the UN Youth’s Poverty Summit in 2019, and the Australian Defence Force Long Tan Youth Leadership and Teamwork awards, that encourages senior students to actively participate in the life of their schools and local communities. Emily also completed her Advanced Foundation and Advanced Royal Academy of Dance exams. In addition to this Commendation, Emma received a SACE subject merit in Research Project B.
Daisy is passionate about creative writing and is an excellent public speaker. Daisy is a gifted musician and was involved in performing in jazz ensembles and school musicals. She supports and advocates for students on the autism spectrum. Daisy’s Research Project explored how the introduction of music therapy in early childhood for children on the spectrum could influence their social and communication skills.
Georgia is passionate about sustainability, especially the future of Adelaide’s coastline. She is involved in the community, volunteering for beach clean ups, and dune management activities. She participated in her school’s Environmental Committee where she implemented an online platform promoting the importance of sustainable fashion and conscious consumerism. In addition to this Commendation, Georgia received SACE subject merits in Material Solutions and Research Project B.
Zane is the recipient of the 2021 Australian National Scholarship and the National Indigenous University Scholarship from the Australian National University. He has a particular interest in equity and the rights of our First Nations peoples.
Emily is a keen debater, plays the viola and trumpet, and received a silver Duke of Edinburgh award. Emily was elected to a leadership role at her school and worked with students and staff to ensure the success of college initiatives. Emily also tutored younger students and participated in AFL, basketball, volleyball, and netball. In addition to this Commendation, Emily received a SACE subject merit in English.
Keeley is passionate about horses. She won dressage awards in 2019 and 2020 and a state youth scholarship from Dressage SA. She is the state representative for Dressage SA and was part of the state team for the inter-school equestrian national championships. In addition to this Commendation, Keeley received SACE subject merits in Integrated Learning B and Research Project B.
As the Debating Team Captain, Madeleine supported her peers to develop their debating skills. She was actively involved in the Smith Family reading program, where she supported disadvantaged children to develop their literacy skills. While at school, Madeleine also took on other leadership roles in music, soccer, and water polo. Madeline received a 2021 Duke of Edinburgh award and in additional to this Commendation, was awarded three SACE subject merits in English Literary Studies, Physics and Mathematical Methods.
Lillian has worked closely with the Hutt Street Centre to raise money for the Walk A Mile In My Boots Challenge, and for St Vincent de Paul Winter Sleepout initiative. She hopes to pursue a career in the fashion industry and promote body-positivity for all women. Lillian attended dancing, singing, and piano lessons, and with her family donates to a disadvantaged village in Fiji, and cultivates ongoing friendships with the villagers. In addition to this Commendation, Lillian received a SACE subject merit in Legal Studies.
Nikita took part in the National Youth Science Forum in 2021 and the Evatt Trophy Competition, which engages high school students in world affairs and issues through debating mock Security Council resolutions. In addition to this Commendation, Nikita received SACE subject merits in Mathematical Methods and Specialist Mathematics.
Clive moved to Australia from South Korea when he was five. He speaks fluent English and Korean, and in addition to his SACE subjects he has studied Korean outside of school to maintain his first language. Clive participates in cross country events, soccer and tennis. He has also worked as a private tutor, and garden assistant. In addition to this Commendation, Clive was awarded three SACE subject merits in Chemistry, Physics and Research Project B.
Joel is an accomplished debater was a finalist in Legacy and Rostrum public speaking competitions. His own family’s challenge with the BRCA gene ignited his efforts to fund raise for the Cancer Council and educating others about the gene. He designed videos of exercises for students that promote physical activity, and a product to manage ‘severs’, a cause of heel pain in young and physically active people.
To complete some of her Stage 2 SACE subjects, Tayla travelled around 700 kilometres a week. She was a member of the Rural Youth Ambassador Program in 2021 and was one of four students selected to attend the National Rural Youth Ambassador Forum in Canberra, where she shared ideas on improving rural education with federal ministers. In addition to this Commendation, Tayla received a SACE subject merit in Outdoor Education.
Holly contributed to many fundraising initiatives during her time at Pedare Christian College, including the senior school quiz night, raising money for the Royal Flying Doctor’s Service.
Lucas was awarded five SACE subject merits in 2021 in English Literary Studies, Specialist Mathematics, Chemistry, Physics and Research Project B. Lucas also scored a subject merit for studying Japanese in 2020. Lucas is now studying mechanical engineering at Adelaide University, with aim to undertake a major in Climate Solutions. A keen mountain biker, Lucas explores trails near his Belair home.
Evelyn Vincin Walker
Evelyn’s achievements in public speaking have been widely recognised. She was the Rostrum Voice of Youth Senior state winner, a Plain English Speaking Award state finalist, and was recognised by the South Australian Debating Association as the most valuable senior debater, receiving the Fran Conroy medal for best speaker. In addition to this Commendation, Evelyn received a SACE subject merit in Research Project B.
Cooper played a key role in his school’s peer support program and mentored other students. He led the school’s guitar ensemble, was involved in the Pedal Prix and participated in football and cricket. In 2021 Cooper was awarded the John Tilley Memorial Award, and the Australian Defence Force’s Long Tan Award.
Tess competes at the national level in cycling. In 2020 she placed first in the Under 19 Women Team Pursuit at the Australian National Track Championships. Tess also attended a STEM Girls full-day workshop at the University of South Australia Mount Gambier campus.
Cheri is an accomplished violinist performing with the Adelaide Youth Orchestra. In 2020 she received the Don Maynard Music Prize for most outstanding achievement in a Stage 2 Music subject. She was accepted into the University of Adelaide’s Headstart program which gives high achieving students the opportunity to study at university while still in Year 12. In addition to this Commendation, Cheri received a SACE subject merit in Physics.